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Beautiful Mystery (18*) + introduction by Tony Rayns

Queer 80s

Two young men lie in bed together in a dark space.

Political correctness flies out the window in Genji Nakamura’s outrageous gay erotic comedy, which satirises author and nationalist Yukio Mishima and his private army. 

Aspiring, patriotic bodybuilder Shinohara is spotted by the dominant Mitani (a caricature of queer writer and ardent nationalist Yukio Mishima) and recruited for militia, with plans to launch a coup d'état. The soldiers have more than revolution on the mind, though, and Shinohara finds himself in a world of gay sex and worship of the body. 

Genji Nakamura’s ‘Pink Film’ (a term used to describe a type of Japanese film with explicit erotic content) is a bawdy and irreverent take down of nationalist hysteria and po-faced patriotism. The comedy veers from outrageous to downright problematic – Shinohara’s first sexual encounter with a fellow soldier is not consensual. This film is a real one-of-a-kind, while the satirical hara-kiri ‘rehearsal’ conducted by Mitani is something to behold.

Tagged with: Cinema Queer 80s

Japan 1983 dir Genji Nakamura 61 min 

In partnership with the Japan Foundation.

Please note this film contains a scene of rape that some viewers may find distressing. 

We are showing a rare, unrestored digital copy of the film.


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Tony Rayns

Tony Rayns is a critic, curator and occasional filmmaker with a special interest in the film cultures of East Asia. He has been awarded the Kawakita Prize for services to Japanese cinema, and recently published the book Just Like Starting Over – A Personal View of the Reinvention of Korean Cinema.

‘This ribald, highly entertaining film was Japan's first gay exploitation feature. Amazing that it was made at a time when discussion of Mishima's sexuality was a virtual taboo in Japan.‘
Tony Rayns, Time Out

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